I scored a vintage, sealed bottle on eBay. I know others have had problems with getting duped or having the perfume poured out, but this was a great experience. The bottle was very carefully packaged, and after I managed to get the stopper off (cut cord, twist, try not to cuss, twist again, hold warm towel over stopper, twist, be thankful when it comes off. Alcohol bath would've probably helped loosen whatever waxy sealant stuff was on there.) This is a beautiful parfum. The cedar came out strong at first, but then settled down to a chilly snowy night. I also smelled a bit of woodsmoke before the clove and a hint of citrus came out. I'm saving this to wear in the month of December.
Arpege to me is very much like the Bombshell Manual of Style mentioned - save it for antique or amber jewelry and nights in old Russian castles. It's a bit loud for my regular tastes in the top notes, but the dry down is wonderfully rich and complex. I'd save it for a night time perfume. One of those very unique frags, especially compared to the overly fruity, bright pink celebutante frags that drive me nuts. Arpege is special.
I remember trying Shalimar in secret from my mom's make-up drawer. It was way too strong, but then I was 8. So trying it again as an adult, I already had preconceived notions in my head that I may not like it. And I was right - the top notes screeched of thin wood smoke, and I nearly scrubbed it off. It brought to mind a Vail or Aspen ski resort during the winter, sitting at a ski lodge near a crackling fire. However pleasant the image, I didn't picture myself smelling like the fire itself. But I decided to wait and see how it dried down. After 15 minutes or so, the thin wood smoke smell started to get fuller, less thin...it started to round out and become more mellow.
And then the most amazing thing happened.
After a good 45 minutes, the perfume dried down and became this lightly smokey, complex, mellow, rich scent. I don't get a strong vanilla, but a lovely mix that reminds me somewhat of autumn. This one might be slightly strong in the office, but wonderful on a cozy coffee date.
This reminds me of tropical florals... a day on the beach where there is no such thing as sunburn or sand in your bathing suit. An illusion of perfection, but one that I am happy to escape into now and then.
I ordered a sample of the Apres L'Ondee parfum from The Perfumed Court - it was part of their Guerlain sample collection. I'd had a rather rough day at work and thought I'd try one of my new samples as a pick me up. After a drop on my wrist, the perfume immediately began living up to its name, "After the Rain." It lifted my heart and spirit, and really felt like its name, the sun breaking through storm clouds. Here in Colorado, the air is really dry. Anytime we get rain, you can smell it in the air and it intensifies the smell of the flowers in your garden. AL'O captures that freshness without being one of those single note perfumes that go by the name of "dirt" or "grass." The scent manages to be light and yet complex - a truly difficult balance which Guerlain carried out beautifully. The dry down for the parfum strength was nothing short of amazing. It's the warm of sun in the air after it rains, slightly earthy (I think that's the iris coming through). There was a hint of powder, but nothing remotely in the "old lady, mom's make up drawer" smell. I love the way this melded with my skin. The sillage, even in the parfum, was minimal - though that could have been because I was stingy with my sample. In short, this is purely lovely.
I wrote Guerlain and asked a couple of questions; when I get any answers I'll post them. Specifically, I wanted to know if they really didn't export Apres L'Ondee to the States because of low demand here (hoping that the more emails they get asking the question, maybe that'd help change their mind...) I also asked if there were any plans to bring it back in either an EDP or parfum, even as a limited edition.
I've read your reviews that say the EDT doesn't last very long, so I'm curious to see how that'd work on me. I'm thinking that if I use a non-scented moisterizer it may help the scent hold longer.
Has anyone tried Dans Tes Bras? Maurice Roucel concocted it and gives credit to Apres L'Ondee for part of its inspiration. Just wondering, since AL'O is so hard to find, and even then in just the EDT, if this would be anything close to it.